A history of coffee
The beginning of coffee history most probably dates back to Medieval Times, around the 10th or more presumably towards the 15th century, but with possible precedents in a series of relationships and legends that surround its first use. The Coffea tree (the native non-domestic species ) originates in the province of Kaffa/Kefa (whence its name) situated in the southwest of Ethiopia, near Gimma; the most widespread legend tells that a shepherd from Abyssinia noticed the tonic effect of this shrub on his herd of goats grazing in the surroundings. The cultivation spread early in the near Arabic Peninsula, where its popularity took advantage of the Muslim prohibition of alcoholic drinks. It was named “K’hawah”, that means “reinvigorating “.
The first evidence of an existing coffee shop, and of the relevant knowledge of the plant, dates back to the 15th century, in the monasteries of Sufism in present Yemen. In the 16th century it had already reached the rest of the Middle East, southern India (Kodagu District), Persia, present Turkey, the Horn of Africa and North Africa. Through the Ottoman Emperor it then spread to the Balkans, the Italian peninsula and the rest of the European
continent, to the Asian southeast and finally to America. Because of its rarity it was very expensive in Europe, at least until the first third of the 18th century. Later on its cultivation was developed either in the French colonies or the Dutch ones overseas, followed by the big coffee maker in the General harbour office in Cuba, in the reign of Brasil, in Venezuela, in the Dutch East Indies and in British Ceylon during the 19th century. (continua)
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